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My Chiaroscuro Painting WIP

edited March 2013 in Post Your Paintings
This has been hanging in my studio for a I can do lettering on the recipe book....however, the more I look at it...the foreground doesn't look right...any suggestions...

I still have lots of shadow work to finish too...appreciate what you think (good or bad)...what to do to make it better...


  • edited March 2013
    Hi Savannah,

    This is coming along really nicely! I especially like the glass of the nutchopper, the beautiful way that you rendered the cloth, and the softness of the vase. As far as the foreground goes, it seems as though the front vertical plane of the table pulls back on the right side, but the edge of the table on the right side is not defined, thus creating the impression that the nutchopper is almost off the table. Even if the table actually does that, I would exercise my artistic license and more clearly define the table edge on the right side, because otherwise it draws attention away from the center of interest. You might also consider putting a bit of cast (albeit light) shadow at the base of the nutchopper to ground it (although I see from your post that you are still working on shadows). I would also consider making the area underneath the tabletop darker to tie it in with the dark background mass above the cups. These are minor things, though. My most important advice is not to take my word for it and wait for the input of more experienced painters here!

  • Thanks Martin...everything you suggested is right on....I really do need to adjust the table line...and I didn't see it before you mentioned it...thank you! That will fix the problem of the nut jar falling off the table...

    As I see the pic posted...I think the orange table on the left is not the right color....or too bright...another thing I need to adjust...

    Hopefully others will join in and leave comments...
  • edited March 2013
    Gorgeous painting. I agree with Martin. Check your cast shadows. If they're sharp don't smooth out. The top is throwing me off a bit from the lighting of the camera. That's find.
    I love the way you lay paint. Super soft and stunning.
    Cloth is beautiful, but don't be afraid to bring some of the stripes to a crisp. Definite what is in front and fade back. Lost and found edges are the key. You have all the perfect makings of BRILLIANT PIECE.
    I love this painting. But, I think Martin mostly hit on the head for you.
    :x >:D< =D> =D> ~O)
  • Thanks Cyn..sorry about the bad photo...took it pretty fast...know its not very good..

    I often forget about lost and found edges...which are so very I'm looking the cloth is totally soft edged....that you for reminding me...

    What do you mean...if the cast shadows are not smooth out? Are you saing keep them sharp without blending?

    Appreciate your input...
  • Sav.
    Here's an example I did in acrylics. Here's the link. Look at the shadows cast on the surface. Sharp (found edge, crisp). If the shadows cast a found edge sharp like, don't blend out. Place in value. You can light touch up with a short liner. Just keep the edge found, if its cast that way. I hope this making sense.

    8-> ;;)
  • I'm so glad you brought this to my attention Cyn....I have been trying to soften all my shadow edges...and in my set up...there are some very sharp/hard and some soft...but I thought they should all be soft...duh!

    That's why I've wiped off most of my dark foreground shadows because I couldn't get them right...your wonderful...thank you so much

    Oh..everyone please check out Cyn's blog....her art is it!
  • tjstjs -
    edited March 2013
    I truly love your color schemes Savannah! But it's not just the color of the objects but how you interpret it into paint. Someone on another thread (sorry I can't remember who) posted your work has a Norman Rockwell look to it overall color wise and I couldn't agree more!

  • Thanks TJS...I do struggle with your input gives me "strength"

    It was not intentional putting complements by each other in this piece, it just happened......but now I feel both colors are fighting for attention...and I don't know how to correct it...

    Focal is supposed to be the glass nut jar....want to ask everyone...what they are looking at first.........

  • The red bands on the cups, the oranges on the card and the nut grinder catch my attention equally.
  • Thanks Grandma...I tried to make a visual triangle out of the RO colors...but since there should only be one focal....I'm not sure this is working...??

  • I am not able to give you technical advice, but it's really nice!
    What happened to the still life with glass grapes and roses ... is finished?
  • I would shadow two of the three or tone down the value of the red. Back them out of the spotlight somehow while keeping the focus on nut grinder. I think that you just have equal values on all three items so that none stands out.
  • Savannah said:

    Focal is supposed to be the glass nut jar....want to ask everyone...what they are looking at first.........

    What I see first is the rectangle red object over the cap of the glass nut jar
  • My eye went to the jar with the red top but jumped over to the bowls. If the bowls were more in shadow it might work better? I really don't know. You'll figure it out and it will be fantastic. I know.
  • Beautiful goblet and carafe!
  • I love your "touch" @Savannah...I'm still available to collect ALL you want throw away!

    Easter is an holiday in Italy...I'm still dealing with my poor animals...the other side of the face is that all will stay with my for Easter!
    Happy Easter to all of you!!

  • Focal is supposed to be the glass nut jar....want to ask everyone...what they are looking at first.........
    I'm kind of flicking back and forth between the recipe book then the nut jar. But I noticed that when I looked at the thumbnail without the detail, I start at the nut jar. :)

  • Thank you all for your kind words....and Happy Easter to everyone too!

    Maria I hope your animals get well very soon.....and all will be well...and my throw aways will be your Maria...

    Graciella thanks for your help....appreciate...
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